**Repress, limited edition of 500** Dominick Fernow (Prurient/Vatican Shadow) returns to his most quietly intriguing alter ego for this expansive new triple album, originally made as a limited run 3 x cassette pack that were not made available for sale. Big recommendation if you’re into Coil, Demdike Stare, Brian Eno / Jon Hassell’s Fourth World.
It's a jaw-dropping journey into the heart of dark, rhythmic ambient music from Fernow's most reclusive and unpredictable alter ego, feted for a deeply psychedelic sensuality that sets it apart from practically all his other works. While entirely instrumental, it also proves to be one of his most expressive outlets; a few thousand miles from Prurient, and more arid than Vatican Shadow, a place where his mind turns primal, panther like, stalking thru the undergrowth of his ambient nether worlds.
Perhaps most arresting is the sense of scale of his pressure systems, maintaining a heady flux between physical bass and persistent, warm downpours in the 15 minute opener Return Of Yellow Herb Ambient, whereas Watery Grave leans back on a breezy sort of boogie pivot maybe best compared with Actress or NWAQ (we kid you not), and the perfectly portentous title of When Spotted They Are Killed On Sight... is matched by the track’s clammy, petrifying nature.
If willing to travel farther, we find some of Fernow’s most layered, even luxuriant harmonic arrangements and poised drum programming in Red Protection Against Black Magic, and the closest he’s come to cinematic detailing with Crustaceans Rise From Salt Water For Vengeance, and we find a possible clue to the project’s esoteric, tribal and anachronistic roots in the head-vibrating folk drone expanse of Thought To Be Bad Omens, which could almost be scoring some Herzog feature on the state of contemporary rainforests.
Finally the throbbing Nocturnal Anatomy and curdled buzz of Full Moon Moth provide some of the album’s most narcotised yet insistent, irresistible moments, before Neel steps in to re-work a vintage RSE cut, Black Magic Originated In Nature with patented Roman sophistication suitable for the dankest dance floors...